Tuesday, 19 June, 2018

Apple: iBoot source code leak does not impact iPhone security

A secret part of Apple’s iPhone software has been posted onlineMore A secret part of Apple’s iPhone software has been posted onlineMore
Stacy Houston | 10 February, 2018, 09:47

Earlier this week, a portion of iOS source code was posted online to GitHub, and in an interesting twist, a new report from Motherboard reveals that the code was originally leaked by a former Apple intern.

The anonymous sources say that they were part of a group of five individuals who were given the leaked iBoot code.

That Apple has been quick to seek removal of the code from GitHub is also proof enough how important the code is for the company.

A recent leak of iOS bootloader source code won't impact iPhone security, according to Apple.

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Users having the latest iOS version have nothing to worry about concerning the potential vulnerabilities. Apple used the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) to force GitHub to take the code down, but in doing so, basically admitted that the code was genuine. "It is not open-source", read the takedown request.

The code was for the outdated iOS 9, released in September 2015, but it is expected that parts of the code may still be in use underpinning the iPhone's security in later releases. However, multiple copies of the code have already spread online. Some may say it won't make any difference but then Apple wouldn't have taken the trouble to take down the iBoot through a legal notice if it contains nothing that can work against its interest.

The development is extremely serious, as iBoot is a critical component of the iPad and iPhone's operating system. The source of the leak is unknown, but you can imagine Apple will be cleaning house to find the culprit. However, the user with the same handle is quite active on other platforms such as YouTube (talking about iOS hacks) and a Twitch account, notes DigitalTrends. This means that updated devices are not completely at risk to vulnerabilities hackers might find in the source code. In any case, Apple will have enough time to secure things up and might issue a patch to cover any risks posed by the leak. Many people ignored it because the user had a short history of posts. The Cupertino, California-based uses a Secure Enclave processor to make jailbreaking nearly impossible, notes DailyMail. The leaked code contained information on the iPhone's boot up process and its security measures.

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